Walmart Leads Online Grocers in Pickup, But Must Boost Subscription Ordering to Gain on Amazon

Randy Hofbauer
Digital and Technology Editor

Mega-retailer Walmart has proven itself to lead the grocery industry when it comes to click-and-collect, but it shines far less when it comes to subscription and repeat ordering for groceries – an area Amazon dominates – posing a significant opportunity, according to new research from Packaged Facts.

According to the Rockville, Md.-based market research firm, Walmart's loyal online grocery shoppers are 30 percent more likely than the average online grocery shopper to cite in-store pickup or curbside pickup as a major influencer when choosing where to shop among online grocers. Moreover, among respondent click-and-collect shoppers to a June 2018 survey fielded by the firm, 42 percent said Walmart was their last click-and-collect pickup location.

At the same time, though, Walmart's online grocery loyalists are 75 percent less likely to select subscription or repeat ordering services as one of the most influential factors when choosing among online grocers. Meanwhile, Amazon's grocery shoppers are 45 percent more likely to view subscription and repeat ordering services as an important factor, suggesting Walmart could better compete in this area with the Seattle-based ecommerce behemoth.

Bentonville, Ark.-based Walmart today has proven itself to be a leading ecommerce grocer, with 23 percent of online grocery shoppers citing Walmart as the retailer they shop the most for consumables. The company is second only to Amazon, which leads at 38 percent.

Walmart made tremendous strides in its grocery ecommerce program in 2018, particularly in click-and-collect. Last September, it celebrated its 2,000th click-and-collect location, allowing shoppers to buy groceries from their computers or mobile devices and pickup at the store for no extra charge. At the time, Walmart said it expected to operate 2,140 pickup points in 430 markets, covering 69 percent of U.S. households.

Walmart operates more than 11,200 stores under 55 banners in 27 countries. The Bentonville, Ark.-based company is No. 1 on Progressive Grocer's list of the top grocers in the United States.

About the Author

Randy Hofbauer

Randy Hofbauer is the former digital and technology editor of Progressive Grocer. He has more than a decade of experience as a content strategist, researcher and marketer, almost all of it covering CPG retailing. His insights and work have been cited in a number of media outlets, including The New York Times, the Associated Press and the Chicago Tribune, and he was named a finalist in the Software & Information Industry Association's 2018 Emerging Leader Awards. Follow him on Twitter or connect with him on LinkedIn.

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